cover image Boyfriends with Girlfriends

Boyfriends with Girlfriends

Alex Sanchez, Simon & Schuster, $16.99 (224p) ISBN 978-1-4169-3773-9

When Lance starts dating bisexual Sergio, he is not quite sure he believes someone can be "turned on by both guys and chicks" as Sergio claims to be. Meanwhile, Lance's best friend, Allie, starts to question her own sexuality when she is attracted to Sergio's lesbian best friend, Kimiko. Moving between the protagonists' alternating perspectives, Sanchez (Bait) carefully spells out the teens' struggles with different aspects of their sexual identities: Kimiko's mother wishes she would dress and act more feminine, Allie worries that kissing Kimiko would ruin their friendship, and Lance gets upset when Sergio refuses to commit to being a couple ("I guess I'd like to know who my competition is," he says, after watching Sergio dance with both a guy and a girl at the homecoming dance). Readers will appreciate a book that delves into the fraught topic of bisexuality, but they may tire of the characters' constant relationship and identity anxieties, which basically define them. The book's subject matter is more memorable than the stories it tells or the characters who tell them. Ages 12–up. (Apr.)